As I age, and that trip is getting faster and faster, I find priorities I have had for years are changing. Habits I thought would be forever are rapidly falling away and replaced with new habits that put less stress on my life.
For instance, I’ve always loved a challenge and sometimes a good argument. My anticipation was poked when something seemed out of reach and I could figure out a way to accomplish it.
I started running obsessively after my 40th birthday. I ran from the edge of my driveway to the edge of my neighbor’s driveway, some 15 feet away, and thought I would die.
The next day I ran double that distance, and the day after, doubled that. Before too long I was running six miles a day, six days a week. And I was addicted to jogging until my hip gave out several years later.
Back then I liked the stress of shortening the time it took to run 6 miles, the rush of finishing a race, the thrill to stay on my feet running on rough surfaces in strange cities.
Today, I have transitioned to slow walking, not seeking speed or distance.
Recently I took on a project that is causing me a great deal of anxiety, time, and concern and I keep wondering why I’m not enjoying this time-consuming and taxing adventure. Just a few years ago I would have grasped the opportunity to test my skills at handling the choices, thinking of the options, finding answers.
I am discovering sitting in a comfortable chair, writing this blog is far more satisfying. My feet up on a footstool, the dogs sharing my seat, listening to favorite oldies, and wasting away the hours answers my need for a good time.
I want to just be. To relax without goals to attain is lovely. Perhaps boring to those who are still filled with the madness of youth. There is a great deal of pleasure in being sedentary and letting my doglets drag me on their morning walks, especially when going uphill.
Yes, I’ve changed obsessive behavior of action, to obsessive behavior of idleness.
I am appreciating this aging process of laziness. Wonder why I waited so long in trying it?
5 thoughts on “Changing Priorities”
Hi Margo, As you say, there are rewards when we slow down! Your post reminds me of the crazy days of career and being a single mom when I was secretly grateful to be too sick to get out of bed. Reading without guilt! Saludos.
Well done Margo. Hurry slowly is the way to go!
I’m with you on this one. I do try to get on the treadmill often (outside has weather) – working for daily, if only for a few minutes. I lost my routine for a couple of weeks when I had a cold with heavy congestion that caused shortness of breath and made that walking difficult – now I’m working to get back on track. Yes, quiet time with the furry kids is my preference.
I never got up to 6 miles and 6 days a week, but I DID use to run, met my friends every Saturday morning for our ‘long’ run, and then ran 3 miles 2 or 3 times a week at home. We were usually training for some race or other and we had a great time together, talking about everything. But one by one we got injured and now there’s only a couple of us that still run. But we still talk, and most of us walk some if the weather is decent. We talk about getting together, but it seems like work. Laziness is taking over. That’s OK.
The next step, I think, is to let go of the notion of “idleness” and “laziness.” A gift of aging is reflection, of listening to the inner voice and sharing when asked or when appropriate. Paying attention to our rhythms, our energy is good for us and for the universe. Thanks for your blog–I am so glad that writing it gives you pleasure for it gives your readers pleasure, too.